An interesting twist on this story is that being a fellow New Yorker, I have come to realise that many, many apps on the smartphone — indeed, smartphones themselves—are prejudice against people who ride the subway. We spend hours each day in metal tubes, underground, deprived from LTE connections, as well as sunlight. Obviously, this creates a problem for streaming apps like Spotify, but also for any app that assumes I can download things on-demand, like Apple’s own Podcasts or Music app. The latter has been a massive headache with the addition of iCloud storage, Apple Music (streaming service) and anything that tries to be a hybrid online service; regular users leave the house thinking they have a certain album or song synced to their phone, but alas, for some reason, you don’t.
Another reason that the iPod still rocks is that you can control the damn thing without taking the device out of your pocket! This may seem simple, but again, subway and bus riders (and even foot-bound pedestrians) don’t like having to dig into their pocket, extract a device, unlock it, tap around, and then finally get what they need. It’s much easier to tap your leg in the exact spot you know the “next” button is located. Again, simpler is better.
You didn’t mention battery life specifically, but needless to say my iPod lasts days longer than my iPhone. Period.
I think the iPod could make a furious and successful comeback with a few slight additions: We can expect the internal drive would be moved to SSD, which is faster, lighter, and more battery-friendly. The upgrade to a lightning port would be welcome indeed, now that everyone has transitioned from their phones and iPads. A Bluetooth radio on-board seems like a must these days, especially if Apple is thinking about removing the conventional headphone jack, and since the dock-speaker industry has been slaughtered (in fact, by the switch from 30-pin to Lightning jacks). An all-purpose firmware update and the ability to sync over wi-fi would make this thing a beast.
Where’s that Kickstarter?!
As a podcast and audiobook junkie, I’ll be sticking to my iPod until it crumbles in my fingers. I hope when that day comes, we have something better to replace it than the current hodge-podge of iOS apps.
(Also, please don’t get me started on how awful Spotify is. Terrible interface from start to finish. Makes the iTunes music store look downright instinctual.)